Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs)
Who would deal with your property and financial affairs or your personal welfare should you be unable to do so yourself for reasons of physical and/or mental incapacity?
As people live longer, more and more of us are likely to suffer some degree of physical and/or mental incapacity. However, you can put in place now – while you are well – provisions to enable a trusted person or persons of your choosing to act on your behalf should such a situation affect you in the future.
What are Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) and what is involved?
On 1st October 2007, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 was fully implemented, bringing into force a number of changes in the way in which we make provision for loss of physical and/or mental incapacity.
A system of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) has taken the place of the former EPAs, now comprising of two separate documents – one for property and financial affairs and the other for health and welfare.
An LPA is as document which you sign now – in advance of the need for others to deal with your affairs as a result of a physical and/or mental incapacity. However, as LPAs are very lengthy and complex, we would suggest that you seek our advice upon them long before any need arises.
Ideally, you should choose more than one person to act as you Attorney under the LPAs. However, the selection of Attorney/s will depend upon your own particular circumstances and we can give you guidance on this point.
If you made an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA), it should still be valid
Since 1 October 2007, it has not been possible to make an Enduring Power of Attorney which, unlike a simple Power of Attorney, was specifically designed to continue should you lose your mental capacity. EPAs have now been replaced by LPAs.
However, if you drew up an EPA prior to 1 October 2007, it should be kept safely until it is needed – in fact, you may have instructed us to retain this for you in our strongroom.
In the event that an EPA needs to come into operation, either you (or your chosen Attorney/s) should contact us for advice and assistance.
Catherine Cammock or Amy Glover on 01785 211411 at our Stafford office or 01889 583871 at our Rugeley office
The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. The law may have changed since this article was published. Readers should not act on the basis of the information included and should take appropriate professional advice upon their own particular circumstances. (50587)